I like to blow stereotypes out of the water–with visuals. In my historical work, “Women Behind Stained Glass,” these church ladies aren’t what you might expect. Three huge stained-glass windows in a downtown church in San Angelo, Texas, are dedicated to three women. Research reveals that two of the three were divorcees in the mid-1800’s and one left her husband to die in an insane asylum in Nashville after the Civil War. They made their homes in West Texas’s Concho Valley between 1864 and 1881, when living on the frontier was no cakewalk. The charmed and tragic lives of these women bring an awareness of their strength and faith and an appreciation for the sacrifices of early pioneers who settled the last frontiers. As the author and researcher of “Women Behind Stained Glass,” I give audiences a glimpse not only of intriguing history but also of research processes from exploring cemeteries to haunting special collections libraries.
I also write fiction, and my novel “The Lark,” a contemporary West Texas novel features a straight male hair-dresser in the small town of Sulfur Gap. Soon coming is the spin-off, “Low Water Crossing.” I speak to various audiences, from book clubs to writers’ groups about the elements of fiction, developing believable characters, writing dialog, and keying in on setting and local color. I also give book reviews of my own or others’ work.
I have worked as an English teacher at the high school and university level and as a public school counselor, with Masters’ degrees in both fields. I am currently working on my third novel, “Thunder.” All of my work laces humor with tragedy and invites new perspectives. Social issues are subtly incorporated, and any feminist would be proud.
I am equipped to do Power Point presentations.